AFL Round 21 – Preview: The Pre-Wrap



Kill the Christmas goose Wrappers!  The Appalling Football League has finally acted.  And done what they should have done back in February.  Or at least before the season started.  Longer running than Neighbours and bigger than Quo Vardis, this saga had to come to a head at some point.  Now we have that point; as blunt as it may be.  The hearing’s on the 26th of August.  Our Leunig Calendar tells us that it’s a Monday before the last round of the Home & Away matches.  (Are you saying that the potential of a wild card entry to September won’t be known till just before Round XXIII starts Wrap? – Ed)

All we’re saying from here deep in the Wrapcave Oh Wise Corrector of Content is –

Three votes.




(It pains me dreadfully to see such cynicism in one so young Wrap.  I hope you’re not saying that this whole three-ringed circus has been stage managed to keep interest in the season going till the last round – Ed)

This whole three-ringed circus, as you so provocatively put it Oh Noble Nobbler of Import, has sucked most of the air out of the footy, and will possibly do so for the rest of the season and beyond.  We should be talking about the backfiring of the Malthouse led Resurgence along Royal Parade.  We should be discussing the surprize sacking of Boss Voss.  Whether Saint Kilda should offer Coach Watters an extension at this stage.  The Rise & Rise of the Richmond Football Club.  The almost messianic turnaround the Administration and the Football Department have wrought at Alberton.  The failure of two highly-fancied teams – West Coast & Adelaide – to rise beyond mediocrity in 2013.  The Rise & Rise of the Richmond Football Club.  Whether The Suns have made real progress or just benefitted from a soft draw?  And how much longer can we, The Long Suffering Footy Fan, be expected to subsidize the Greater Western Sydney Experiment?  Let’s not forget the Excitement Machine being put together on the far side of Saltwater River.  Nor of course the machinations in The LongRoom as the Big End of Town rallies to salvage a revered institution they’d pretty much managed to trash since their last Glory Days under The Late Great Norm Smith.  Did we mention the Rise & Rise of the Richmond Football Club?  How the streets are resonating with the onwards and upwards march of The Monochrome Army under Coach Figjam.  And what about The Kangaroos – shouldn’t we be having them on the couch to delve into the seemingly incurable malaise brought on by their abandonment of the Shinboner Spirit?  Investigation is justified of the encouragement from City Hall for the poaching of out-of-contract marquee players to bolster the shares of their ill thought through attempt to establish a team in Western Sydney.  We should be deliberating on how the new post-Geisha interpretation of the Rules is going to impact Our Great Game.  And the cap on interchanges.  What The Top Three – Hawthorn, Sydney & Geelong – have put in place to ensure dynastic succession certainly warrants discussion.  And how long will it be before Richmond join them, even outrank them, in this pantheon?

Not to mention the challengers that will arise in September to wrest The Cup from Sydney’s steely grip.

Then there’s that insidious disease now officially recognized as Bomber Bulimia.  We should be laying that out on the dissecting table, shouldn’t we?  They can whinge all they like out there in the Shadows of Mt Macedon.  Whinge about being set upon by the yellow press.  About being treated as pariahs by The Football Public.  About the energy sapping need to justify their actions before every jurisdiction in which they have erred or transgressed.  (Allegedly erred & transgressed please Wrap.  Allegedly – Ed)  But the real question that should be directed at Melrose Drive is this.  If the hiring of two highly decorated wonder coaches – one of them even highly credentialed – and a course of supposedly well researched medications haven’t been able to reverse the trend of the last half dozen or so years, where to next?  They’re the sorts of things we should be reviewing.  You see, in the last decade The Gliders have lost the wind beneath their wings in dramatic fashion as September dawns.  Of the 40 matches played in the not so merry month of August in the last decade, The Bombers have crashed no fewer than 30 times.  That’s right Wrappers; they’ve got a winning percentage of 25 over that period.  Shouldn’t we, and Essendon for that matter, be looking at that phenomenon?  (Maybe they have Wrap, and what we’ve been bombarded with all season is the outcome of their review – Ed).

Be that as it may Oh Powerful Purveyor of Righteous Verbosity, the essentials remain.  In fact Wrappers, when you think about it, Essendon should have the book thrown at them just for hogging the limelight in Season 2013, wouldn’t you think?

Heard on a tramstop along the 109 route – just after school was out for the day – in response to an apparently outlandish claim or denial.  Yeah, you and James Hird.  Shoeless Jim, you’ve arrived.

Breaking News – Fight!  Fight!  Fight!  It’s on now Wrappers.  The EFC v the AFL.  Niño Dorado v the Ayatollah.  Cobra v Mongoose.  The outcome?  Who knows.  Just don’t hold your breath waiting for one.  And keep in mind that you – The Long Suffering Foot Fan – will be paying for one half of the legal bill.  (Let the punishment fit the legal fee – Ed).

But enough of my gabbin’.  Let’s see who is going to be in the gun and who’s going to be on the run after Round XXI.

The Mayblooms v Carringbush on The Big Stage tonight.  In for the Mustard Pots: Hodge, Birchall & Franklin.  No change for The Maggies.  You could talk about this one all morning, but the truth of the matter is that The Hawks seriously outgun The Pies up forward.  As honest as Maxwell, Brown, Shaw, Macaffer, Keefe & Goldsack are, Buddy, Roughie, Bruest, Riolli, Hodge & Gunston are better.  And, apart from Buddy, they’re all deadly kicks.  At the other end The Woodsmen line up with Cloke, Lynch, Sidebottom, Elliott, Beams & Reid.  Not a bad lot of scoring options you say?  Okay.  Add Burgoyne, Gibson, Duryea, Stratton, Lake & Guerra to the mix.  See what we mean?  The mid-fields we see as even.  Harry O is always a problem, so is Shaw, and our favourite on-baller Scott Pendlebury is in Brownlow form right now.  And hasn’t the return of Luke Ball given the Collingwood pack some grunt?  They’ll put plenty of pressure on Sammy, Sewell & Lewis.  But it’s off the splinters that The Squawkers have the edge.  Poppy and Hillie are positively explosive.  Of course, anyone could win on the night.  If The Woodsmen unpack another bale of GAD they could quite easily steal this one.  (Then wouldn’t The Premiership be a Cakewalk? – Ed)  The Bagmen feel it’s The Paid Up Proud & Passionate, and have offered a less than risk free $1.60.  The Sage Pundits concur to in a ratio of 19:8.  (That’s without the Village Idiot – Ed)  Who are we to fly in the face of such a shrewdness of wisdom?  The Leafblowers for us here in Wrapland.

The Striped Marvels v The Blue Boys at THOF for the early one on Saturday.  Pettard & Grimes in for Newman and Nahas; The Silvertails have brought in a regular scout troop.  Casboult, Robinson, McInnes, Graham & Bell.  Judd, Rowe, Gartlett, Cachia, & Watson are the outs.  All but one of them forced.  You’d be excused for thinking The Bluebaggers will be glad when this season’s over, wouldn’t you?  They’ve got Wallsie on their case now.  He’s telling it as it is.  Actually, the last 12 months may turn out to be a seminal moment in Silvertail history.  They’ve been able to fly under the smoke screen that has blocked out most of the season, but the truth of the matter is Mickey’s pretty teed off with what he’s been sold.  (C’mon Mickey; you cleaned up a bomb on this deal.  Get on with what you’re supposed to be doing – Ed)  The inventory he was shown when he signed up hasn’t matched the audit he’s taken over the season.  There’s serious talk about a total stocktake of the merchandise, and that we’ll be seeing a totally different Miseries on display next season.  That it has to be done is not disputed.  How The Bluebagger Faithful are going to take it is another matter.  It was last Century when Carlton last contested a Flag, and 18 years since they won one.  Final’s appearance in recent times have been no more than cameos.  Another three years and they’ll qualify for Long Suffering Status.  A ranking, in their overweening condescension, they’ve mocked and avoided over the years.  It would give the Tigers great joy to help their Old Enemy to achieve this hitherto unreachable goal.  The Striped Marvels for us here deep in the Skull Cave.  And at $1.35 you can slip the mortgage money on it.

The Power v The Abletts at the New Arctic Park at the traditional time.  Not this time Sunbeams.  And doesn’t that $1.20 look ripe for the picking?  Is Little Tommy’s getting a bit carefree with William Hill’s money – you’d be tempted to say?

The Bombers v The Shinboners on the Shifting Sands of Docklands in the gathering gloom.  The Flying Syringes have made eight changes.  Two of them caused by suspensions to senior players.  What does that suggest to you Wrappers?  Us too.  And considering Professor Gadget had so much to play for.  Apparently the Selectors out at Melrose Drive thought the Bomber Fan who twice jumped the fence last week showed more desire for the Pigskin than the XXII they had running around and he’s starting in the back pocket this week with an occasional run on the ball.  They’ve brought in Jetta, O’Brien, Dalgleish, Crameri & Daniher.  The Roos, in the death throws of a season to forget, should be able to account for this fading shadow of a football team they’re bringing in from Whingy Hill.  (Who are in the death throws of their own hubris – Ed)  However, with high Australian dollar, it’s been cheaper to import the Shinboner Spirit from China, and now there’s serious doubts about the potency of the Sacred Elixir.  They’ve re-gained Grima & McKenzie at the expense of Hine & Garner.  I know we’ve had a postit note on the screen not to tip them in a fit, but the same goes for the other mob when they fighting their Bomber Bulimia.  North for the office & pub tipping competition, but direct you’re investment energies to terra firma.

The Western Sydney v The Sleepy Hollow Millionaires at Paterson’s Curse on Saturday night.  The Wedgies seemed to turn their season around last week, however, SOTG are suggesting The Broken Bombers may not have provided a fair test of The Aquila Audax’s mettle.  They’re back in the Eagle’s Nest for this one.  The Handbags have had a whiff of vinyl about them this season.  They’ve sent Big Tomahawk off to the Opp Shop this week and brought in Murdoch & Big Bicavs.  The Weagles have lost La Cras and dropped Wilson.  Shuey & Carter step to the firing line.  Look, we’d like to be able to give the Avenging Eagle and the Poet Laureate of Peppermint Grove some hope, but with The Moggies eyeing off a Top Two Finish and a Home Final we can’t see them dropping this one.  Be prepared to be disappointed down there among the trendy seafood cafes and atmospheric coffee shops around Corio Bay, but you should have enough for the West Coast Disappointments.  The Pivotonians.

The Maroons v The Orangemen at The Gabbatoir on Saturday night.  Remember that old sick joke from the 60s?  What’s the latest score from Rome?  Lions 6 – Christians nil.  Boom boom Ktssssh. (That wasn’t one of Lenny Bruce’s lines was it Wrap? – Ed)  Well, that’s how we’re calling this one.  The Boys loved Vossy, or so they say.  The Committee say they had to sack Boss Voss to ward off a players’ revolt.  Who you believe is immaterial; the Club comes first.  And who should be waiting in the wings to take over but Bomber Harvey.  (Didn’t he take over when Fremantle sacked Chris Connolly? – Ed)  Be that as it may, Oh Haughty Hacker of Hieroglyphics, you’d have to say The Bad News Bears OTR rebound in The Lions’ Den will have too much to play for against Das Frühstück Pointe Kinder at this end of the season.  (Their place on the Brisbane team sheet for instance – Ed)  The Lions.

The Refractory Redlegs v The Purple Haze at The People’s Ground to kick off the Sunday leg of Round XXI.  They could hold this one at Loys Paddock and still not have a parking problem.  The Anchormen.

The Bloods v The Feeling Faints at Moore Park Road.  The Lakers will start redhot favourites, and rightly so.  The Sainters aren’t having the best of seasons, and this match isn’t going to register any improvement.  The Swans are looking for percentage to ward off an Away Final in Week 1 of September, and in this round of the Lakeside Trophy it’s going to be The Seagulls’ feathers that are plucked.  Here’s the one for the mortgage money, because The Swanees are the Wrap Safe as Houses Investment Opportunity of The Round.

The Sons of The Mighty West v The Free Settlers on the Shifting Sands to wind things up.  The Doggies SIU** The Silvertails for Teddy last week, and although they’re playing a real football team this week they should prevail.  The Chardonnays jumped The Kangas last round and withstood a late surge from The Desperate Visitors.  This effort notwithstanding, won’t carry much weight with The Boys of The Bulldog Breed.  That’s right Wrappers, Footscray are the Wrap Roughie of The Round once more.  Not sure that Hill’s have made the right decision leaving Little Tommy on the book.  He’s got them out at $2.20.  Nurelle, a keen Kennel Mate, is putting half her holiday money on them.

Good tipping and even better punting.

And remember, if you read it in the Wrap you’ll know it’s not crap.

This week has seen the Fourth Estate in the firing line for their role in the Bombers’ bungled supplement scandal.  The Wrap Research Department has been on the case since mid-week and have given us this week’s jumbled quotes.  The authors are Walter Lippmann – Albert Camus -??Thomas Jefferson?-? Lord Northcliff?- ?Samuel Johnson – Oscar Wilde??- Anonymous & Thomas Jefferson.  Oscar Wilde is usually easy to pick.  And anonymous gives itself away.

The difference between literature and journalism is that journalism is unreadable and literature is not read. 

Our liberty depends on the freedom of the press, and that cannot be limited without being lost.

There can be no higher law in journalism than to tell the truth and to shame the devil.

The liberty of the press is a blessing when we are inclined to write against others, and a calamity when we find ourselves overborne by the multitude of our assailants.

A free press can be good or bad, but, most certainly, without freedom a press will never be anything but bad.

News is something someone wants suppressed.  Everything else is just advertising.

Were it left to me to decide whether we should have a government without newspapers, or newspapers without a government, I should not hesitate a moment to prefer the latter.

A news story should be like a mini skirt on a woman.  Long enough to cover the subject but short enough to be interesting.

And it’s been a rough week, especially at Jellymont House and Whingy Hill.  In fact it’s been a tough year.  And all because of a few pharmaceuticals.  We decided to go the Pharmaceutical Convention up at Wagga Wagga during the week to try to discover just what sort off people they really are.  You know; when they let their hair down a bit and just be themselves.  The comedian was warming up the crowd when we arrived.  They’re quite a fun bunch these pharmacists.

Q: What is the show cesium and iodine love watching together?  


Q: What is the chemical formula for “coffee”?   ?

A: CoFe2

Q: What is the chemical formula for “banana”?

?A: BaNa2

Q: What do you do with a sick chemist? ?

A: If you can’t helium, and you can’t curium, then you might as well barium.

Q: Did you hear oxygen went on a date with potassium? ?

A: It went OK.

Q: Anyone know any jokes about sodium? ?

A: Na

Q: What is the most important rule in chemistry? ?

A: Never lick the spoon!

Helium walks into a bar, ?The bar tender says “We don’t serve noble gasses in here.” ?Helium doesn’t react.

Silver walks up to Gold in a bar and says, “AU, get outta here!”

If the Silver Surfer and Iron Man team up, they’d be alloys.

We’re making bad chemistry jokes because all the good ones Argon

We would like to apologize for not adding more jokes… but we only update them…. periodically!

We didn’t get a lot of them, but Danksie, who got us a table up near the stage, was rolling around on the floor hugging his sides.  Mal Hooper and Dr Ageless were worried he may have licked a spoon.  But Robbo said he was always like that before he went down to the bank.

* – Wrapping Paper Publications would like to categorically refute the groundless allegation that they have been the genesis of certain rumours pertaining to the Essendon Football Club.  In particular that the EFC is to be translocated to an expansion zone for Australia’s Antarctic possessions, and based on Heard Island.

** – SIU  – Stick It Up (‘em)

About John Mosig

I'm an Aussie Rules tragic who can remember, as a four year old, shaking the hand of Captain Blood in the rooms just before he ran out onto the ground after half time, as my Old Man slipped him a packet of under-the-counter Craven A cork tipped. Now it's my turn to take my grandson Ben through the ritual of character building that is the journey through PUNT ROAD to the outside world.


  1. Enjoyed your column MW. If only you’d called it quits after the journalism quotes.
    The Tigers are certs at the 1.35 – if only they weren’t the Tigers. The Jack Dyer article in the Sage during the week was a ripper wasn’t it MW? Was that a tear I saw dribbling down to the hot end of your Turf Cork Tipped? The things are bloody hard to relight when they get damp. Amazing what these journos can produce when they write about footy, eh?
    The Kangas are certs too. My post it note says – “never to be tipped away from the Shifting Sands.” Horses for courses.
    I have a sneaky feeling that the Bears may have the sulks after the sacking of the MLCL.* Could do worse than a spec at the long odds and save at the line. The Orangemen certainly didn’t overexert themselves in the West last week, so they might have one last shot in the locker.
    Nearly choked on the Weeties when I read that the Avenging Eagle had been hanging out with some bloke from Peppermint Grove. I only get that close to the stockbroker belt when their drains need unblocking.
    Mind nothing would surprise, as AE has been on the pixie dust since she heard Bruce is heading for Perth in February. She said we needed a clear out to make the place hospitable for His Bruceness. When I asked if she meant of the spare room, she said no – for the duration.
    The sight of AE and Mrs Les in a catfight to touch the hem of his hanky will not be pretty. The Mayor of Fremantle and I may be sharing the same kennel for the week.

  2. You had to be there Mr B. At the Pharmacists’ Convention. They’re quite a happy bunch once they lick a few spoons. Quite a bit of loose talk once they got going. Naturally I can’t reveal confidences, but I can say they’ve been busy over the last few years, and Whingy Hill hasn’t been their only destination. I asked them if they’d been to Perth, but they said even the money hungry Bruce Springsteen doesn’t do Perth. I guess that was before Brucey Boy found out the streets were paved with gold over there. Hope The Girls have all their teenage fantasies fulfilled. And you Boys don’t get yourselves too comfortable in the kennel. I’ll send over a few souvenir spoons from the sample bag Danksie slipped into the boot as we drove off.

    Not too sure about those Shinboners. I’ve given them the nod, but The Peptides might have one last kick in them.

    Sorry about the typo there – on The Western Eagles – calling them The Western Sydney. The stress of the season’s catching up to me. Or maybe I licked a few too many spoons at the Pharmacists’ Convention.

  3. Certs – If only they weren’t the Tigers????

  4. You were spot on PB

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